As a blogger, one of the most exciting things to have a brand say “YES!” to our pitch.
I know because I still get excited. Especially when it is a brand I have been dying to work with.
But, it took a lot of no’s for me to get to those yeses.
I have a lot of clients ask me the same questions:
How do I pitch to brands?
What do I say?
What if they say no?
We are going to talk about those questions and a few more that you may have. Before we tackle those, it’s important to understand the art of the pitch.
A pitch isn’t just about a blogger doing a service and getting paid for it.
It’s about coming to an agreement and building a partnership.
Before you can start the pitching process, understand that you are not doing a job for the brand, but instead you are doing it with them.
If you structure your mindset around this thinking, you will go into the pitching process with much more confidence.
Pitching should not be a one-way conversation. If you were standing in a board room giving your pitch in person, the brand executives would not simly say no, and you walk out of the room. There’s more to the process. I will get into this in detail in a moment. But let’s start at the top.
There are 4 steps to a proper pitch. Some bloggers complete only a couple of these. I am going to go through each step in order to ensure your next pitch is a yes-worthy pitch.
Pitching to Brands
Step 1: Research
Many bloggers skip this step completely. Don’t. You can’t go into any pitch without first doing your research. Start with getting to know the brand’s overall mission. Most brands will have it on their website either in their About section or on their main page. For example, when I go to Tom’s website, I can click on their “How We Give” tab to get more information on their mission and how they serve the world.
Now that I have a clear understanding of what they stand for, I can then determine if what I stand for also aligns with their brand message. If it doesn’t, then it wouldn’t be a good idea for me to send them a pitch. But if my brand message aligns with theirs, then I can proceed with my pitch as well as include that as a part of my pitch. As someone who has been pitched to, it is quite unnerving to have someone send you a pitch and it doesn’t have anything to do with your brand at all.
Along with checking their website, take a look at their social media accounts as well. Get a feel for the brand and the content they post.
Step 2: Prepare
You have already started to prepare by doing some research. Now you have the information you need to spark an emotional connection with the brand you are pitching to. You have also taken a look at their social media accounts. Follow them, engage with them, and build a social relationship. If you already use their products, tag them! (Keep the level of stalking at a minimum!) Be genuine and authentic. You don’t have to stalk a brand for months, but having that social connection as a foundation can go a long way.
The next thing you need to do is find out how to contact a brand. You want to avoid contacting the wrong department. More than likely, your pitch will never reach the person it was intended for. Try you best to find the right method to contact a brand. For example, when you go to the American Girl website, you can scroll to the bottom and click about. It will lead you to their corporate information. From there they have a Media Request form for you to fill out. Other companies may just have the contact information of their media contact. Always look for links such as Media, PR, Press, etc.
Step 3: Pitch
Your pitch should follow a general format but you also want to include some of your personality. Brands receive pitches ALL OF THE TIME. They want something that stands out and that will make them want to work with you. Remember, be confident in what you are offering and let that come across in your pitch. Don’t be afraid to pitch to a brand just because you don’t feel as thought your “numbers” aren’t where they should be. If I waited for my numbers to be high, I would have never sent my first pitch! Having low reach does not automatically exclude you from being considered. There is more to your pitch that your reach.
We often think that our reach is the end all be all. In reality, it’s an added bonus. Let your pitch reflect that. Don’t lead with “I have x amount of followers and x amount on my email list.” That should not be the most important thing. Instead lead with the brand. Why do you want to work with them? What do you love about their products? What features do you want to highlight for your readers? How will their product benefit others? And don’t forget the mission. “I know your mission is to help young girls feel empowered. As a mom of girls….” Create that emotional connection.
Then, you can add your numbers. Let them know how engaged your audience is with what you share on your blog and on your social media posts.
Having a media kit would also be very helpful to attach. Your media kit should hightlight your overall blog topic and mission, your reach (followers, email list), the demographic you reach (male or female, ages groups, countries), and features you’ve done before, and the types of sponsorships your do (giveaways, ads, social media promotion, videos).
Step 4: Keep Pitching
Pitching to brands can be hard, especially if you have gotten a lot of no’s in the past. But the key is to learn from those no’s. I always like to send a followup email for tips from the brand to get a better sense of what they are looking for. If there are somethings I can change, I make the necessary tweaks and re-pitch.
Also, don’t wait around for a brand to respond. Keep pitching! Make a list of 10-20 brands you want to work with and send out pitches to each one. If this is what you want to do as a blogger, you have to work for it until the brands start coming to you!
Brands love to work with influencers. You have more power than you know. You have so much to offer and you have to own that! Be confident, give your best, and be sure to do your research!
What other tips do you have for pitching to brands?
Did you learn anything new from today’s post? Share in the comments!
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